As in the time of the Buddha, the monastery doesn’t grow or buy food and therefore is completely dependent on daily alms and donations of food. The monks walk alms round accepting food donations in Ukiah once a week, on the lunar observance days (check the calendar for details). For the rest of the week, postulants (anagārikas) and lay visitors prepare the daily meal from whatever food items have been given to the monastery.
Please call the monastery prior to donating food items to inquire about which specific things are currently needed. Kitchen needs change frequently and this is particularly the case with fresh food.
In general, items which the kitchen frequently is in need of are vegetables, salad greens, milk, soy milk, bread, oatmeal, nuts, butter, cheese, eggs and lentils/beans. We usually have a surplus of rice and bottled water so these items are not needed.
The monastics eat one main meal a day in late morning and the monastic regulations require that they finish by midday. If you would like to make an offering for the meal, please call in advance if possible to coordinate with the kitchen manager and plan to arrive by 10:00 am.
Offering a Meal at the Monastery
Offering food to the monastic community provides an opportunity to visit and participate in the lifestyle of the monastery. A simple menu is fine, but do remember that it is the only meal for the day. You are welcome to cook your food in the monastery kitchen. Some people may feel awkward preparing food in a kitchen that is not their own. If that is the case, it may be easier if you’ve prepared the main dish ahead of time. When offering the meal at the monastery, the kitchen manager can help explain the protocol for offering food to the monks. If you are interested in offering a meal please submit the contact form with the details of the offering you are interested in making to help us plan ahead.
Offering Goods and Supplies
The monastic code requires the Saṅgha to be dependent upon the lay community for all their physical needs. Besides food, other goods and supplies are needed for the resident community and the running of the facilities. If you are planning to visit the monastery and would like to bring either food offerings or useful supplies, you can request a current list of needed items by contacting the monastery.